The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

YouTube stars headed to Toronto for inaugural Buffer Festival for web videos

  • Print

TORONTO - Just weeks after some of Hollywood's biggest names cleared town at the end of the Toronto International Film Festival, the city will soon be host to another barrage of visiting filmmakers attending a multi-day festival.

This one is dedicated to the art of YouTube.

The inaugural Buffer Festival, which highlights the work of some of the top creators on Google's video streaming website, comes to Toronto on Nov. 8 and runs for three days.

While not household names, the creators behind the YouTube channels CTFXC, Charlie Is So Cool Like, DailyGrace, The Fine Brothers, Jack's Films, MysteryGuitarMan, Prank vs Prank, Schmoyoho, IISuperwomanII and What the Buck? each have more than one million subscribers who have signed up to see everything they post online.

"In 2011, YouTube was definitely something that everyone knew about, but I think in 2013 it's something that everybody not only knows about but is starting to respect and the public is starting to become aware of what a YouTube celebrity is," said St. Catharines, Ont., native Corey Vidal, whose company ApprenticeA Productions is spearheading the festival.

"They know about people like Jenna Marbles and Ray William Johnson, whose names are entering the mainstream, people know that people are building careers off of YouTube."

Vidal is a YouTube veteran himself. He unofficially launched his YouTube career back in 2006 and went pro in 2008, after creating a viral hit with an a cappella tribute to composer John Williams and "Star Wars," which is at 18.6 million hits and counting.

Vidal said he first had the idea for a YouTube film festival in 2011 but it wasn't until a chance meeting last year with someone from the Canadian Film Centre that a real plan took shape.

His film fest idea won funding and support from the CFC's Ideaboost program — which bills itself as "a bootcamp for technology platforms and interactive applications for the entertainment industry" — and it didn't take long for major sponsors including Google, Contiki, Canon and Cineplex to come on board.

With funding in hand, Vidal was able to book screenings at some of the top movie theatres in town, including the TIFF Bell Lightbox and the Scotiabank Theatre, and fly in YouTube superstars for the event.

Each screening costs $15 and is 90 minutes long, with roughly half the running time dedicated to watching videos on the big screen and the other half allotted for discussions with the content creators. A ticket also buys access to a two-hour meet and greet after the screening.

"The content is going to be a combination of the absolute best content that a creator has made, whether popular or not, and then they're going to premiere some new stuff," said Vidal.

"It's going to be very interactive, very fun and fresh, it's not sitting in the dark for an hour and a half."

Vidal said he's already starting to plan how to make the festival even bigger next year.

"We're already thinking big picture, we don't want to count our chickens before they hatch but there's so much in motion and so much momentum," he said, adding that he hopes creators will start thinking of Buffer Festival like major film fests, where creators take big new projects to debut.

"Who knows what type of content people might create for next year?"

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Steve Ashton comments on bid for NDP leadership

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A group of Horese pose for the camera in the early evening light at Southcreek Stables in Stl Norbert Wednessday. Sept  14, 2011 (RUTH BONNEVILLE) / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A water lily in full bloom is reflected in the pond at the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden Tuesday afternoon. Standup photo. Sept 11,  2012 (Ruth Bonneville/Winnipeg Free Press)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

With the Canadian junior team off to such a great start, will you be watching the World junior hockey championship?

View Results

Ads by Google